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How to Foil a Tech-Support Scam

October 19, 2016 Two years ago, an elderly man with a French accent called the office of E-Racer Tech, a Florida-based tech-support company. His computer was acting up, he said, and he needed a hand. The technician on the line asked a few questions, and then he agreed: The computer was in bad...

Amazon Wants to Scan Your License Plate

October 12, 2016 A drive-through for your groceries: According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, that’s one of Amazon’s many ambitions for the next version of its grocery-delivery service, Fresh. The company will set up a series of “convenience stores,” the Journal reports, where it will sell basic goods like milk,...

Hackers Can Listen In on Your Skype Calls

October 11, 2016 Mark Zuckerberg covers up his laptop’s camera with a little piece of tape. After he posted a photo of himself at a desk this summer celebrating Instagram’s growing popularity, online commenters seized on the little gray strip above his laptop screen. “You Should Consider It, Too,” read a headline on...

The Global Economic Damage of Internet Blackouts

October 7, 2016 Last weekend, cellphones across Iraq lit up with the same text message. “Dear subscriber,” the message read in Arabic. “On instructions from the Ministry of Communications, internet access will be cut off every day between October 1 and 8, from 6 to 9 a.m. These instructions were issued to every...

Why Google Is Building Its Own Phones Now

October 5, 2016 It was the sort of thing Steve Jobs might’ve said at an Apple event: “It’s details like these we worked hard to get right—these little things that make the whole experience easier and more seamless.” But it wasn’t him—it was a guy named Clay Bavor. Bavor is Google’s vice president...

from govexec

The Algorithms That Tell Bosses How Employees Are Feeling

September 30, 2016 Every day, humans type out more than 200 billion emails, hundreds of millions of tweets, and innumerable texts, chats, and private messages. No one person could pick through even a tiny sliver of this information and stitch together themes and trends—but computers are starting to be able to. For more...

Why Won’t Trump Blame the DNC Hack on Russia?

September 30, 2016 After FBI Director Jim Comey warned a congressional panel Wednesday that hackers are “poking around” voter-registration systems in various states, law-enforcement officials told CNN the U.S. suspects Russian involvement. ABC News reported nearly half of U.S. states have come under cyberattack from hackers affiliated with Russia, which helps explain Comey’s...

The Algorithms That Tell Bosses How Employees Are Feeling

September 29, 2016 Every day, humans type out more than 200 billion emails, hundreds of millions of tweets, and innumerable texts, chats, and private messages. No one person could pick through even a tiny sliver of this information and stitch together themes and trends—but computers are starting to be able to. For more...

Virtual Classrooms Can Be as Unequal as Real Ones

September 26, 2016 When massive open online courses, or MOOCs, exploded in popularity in the early 2010s, educators were particularly excited about the courses’ potential to give disadvantaged students equal access to a quality education. But a bevy of recent research has shown that online learning has largely fallen short of that goal....

from govexec

Would Obama Pardon Edward Snowden?

September 16, 2016 Last month, Josh Earnest, the White House press secretary, wrote a letter to the editors of The New York Times. He argued that a recent column that attacked President Obama’s record on government transparency had failed to take into account the steps the administration took to fulfill Obama’s campaign promise...